Play the game!
Rowena Wendy Lim | Asia | 11/24/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Star Ocean EX is a 26-episode TV series based on the Sony Playstation game Star Ocean: 2nd Story. Now Star Ocean: 2nd Story happens to be one of my all time favorite RPGs, and so I was full of anticipation for this particular anime release.
Star Ocean EX chronicles Claude and Rena's journey to save the planet. Like most RPGs, these two travel to different towns and dungeons, recruit party members, gain information, and level up in terms of skills and abilities. Eventually, Claude and Rena form one big party to troop to the final boss' lair and attack. Having played the game prior to watching the anime is a double-edged sword. On one hand, I was very happy to see familiar characters and places -- so happy that I got the uncontrollable urge to pick up the game once more and play all the way through it for the fifth time. But on the other hand, this series is so closely based on the game that the story is basically the same. That about killed any sense of suspense or thrill for me because I already knew who Claude and Rena were going to meet, what was going to happen, and so forth.
The art and animation are nicely done. Character designs are beautiful and quite faithful to those you'd find in the game. Alas, Star Ocean EX's ending leaves something else to be desired. It's a big cliffhanger -- Claude realizes his self-worth, and everybody discovers that they still need to defeat some more baddies. The end. What the hell is up with that? I don't know if this is one way of telling me there's going to be a sequel but I was mighty pissed after sitting through all 26
eps and then being given THAT. On a more positive note, I really enjoyed how the characters were portrayed because their individual personalities really shone through in spite of everything. It was fun watching them relate to each other and handle various situations in their own ways.
Star Ocean EX is altogether an above average anime, but to be honest it's really better off as a game. Those who've played Star Ocean: 2nd Story can't help but know what's going to happen next, while those who've never played may find the whole drill of going to towns, recruiting people, etc. a tad tedious. If you like playing through RPGs (like I do) I suggest you play the game instead... I'd only recommend this anime if you like RPGs but don't want to play them.
Star Ocean EX
Jeffery Cox | Avery, TX | 10/31/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"First off I only watched the bootleg copies they sell all over EBAY. Despite the quality being very poor, I still enjoyed the whole series. To bad they waited this long to release this series in America, because it relates to the Star Ocean game released for Playstation about 5 years ago. Anybody that enjoyed the game should love the series too, since it follows the game almost exactly, with a little added humor of course. The only downside is that the ending is a cliffhanger. It'll leave you wondering what happened, and the only way to answer will be to play the game to find out. Otherwise, I think everybody who watches it will like it unless they screw up with the english cast, but then there's always the japanese. I think this show will remind gamers how much they liked the game and any of them that watch it will spend the next week playing it again, if they can find a copy. This is definately a show to at least rent. You won't be disappointed.
P.S. Anybody that finds the game should buy it too. It was the 2nd best RPG (next to Final Fantasy 7) released on PlayStation with like 86 (no joke) endings and maybe 60 hrs gameplay."
Star Ocean EX Review
K. Jasmin | TX, USA | 01/16/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"As said, this game is based on the Playstation game: Star Ocean 2. I've seen the whole series through subtitles, and for fans of the game it's quite good. I think knowing what's going to happen really doesn't matter here, since the series was scrapped in Japan (though the second half was released on audio-only discs). Star Ocean EX on DVD covers the first disc of the game through a Claude/Rena/Celine/Ashton storyline, and you will notice many side-characters from the game as well as people from Private Actions performed in the game. All in all, if you're a fan of the game definetly check this out. If you're not, you may be disappointed with the low-quality animation and somewhat bouncy storyline. This anime also has a good amount of humor to go with the action-based plot."